What is fair? The concept of fairness is somewhat complex; but, thankfully, an educator named Aimee Scott has broken it down with some visual aids—Band-Aids, actually. The Utah-based third-grade teacher is an active TikToker who uses her platform to spread knowledge and understanding. In a now-viral TikTok video (it has nearly seven million views), Scott shares a simple lesson with the use of bandages to explain a complicated concept in a way that children can understand. And, honestly, it clarifies abstract ideas for adults as well.
Here’s how the “Band-Aid Lesson” goes:
On the first day of school, Scott plays this “fairness” game by asking her students to raise their hands if they have ever scraped their elbow in class. She calls on one child to tell their story of how they hurt and scraped their elbow. After they've told their story, she says, “I'm so sorry you hurt your elbow” and puts a Band-Aid on their elbow.
Next, she asks her students to raise their hands if they have ever bumped their head in class. She calls on one child to tell their story of how they bumped their head. After they're done, she says, “I'm so sorry you hurt your head.” At this point, things get funny as she proceeds to she put a Band-Aid on… their elbow!
Scott repeats this same sequence for a scraped knee, ending it with another Band-Aid on the child's elbow.
By this time, all of her students seem to be confused. Scott stops the lesson and has a conversation about how she gave everyone the exact same thing in the exact same way, yet it wasn't helpful to all of them. She goes on to explain in her TikTok video that “fair does not mean everyone gets the same thing. Fair means that everyone gets what they need to be successful.”
After the lesson, students are more understanding as to why kids who have diabetes need an extra snack to raise their blood sugar levels, or why other kids who have autism need noise canceling headphones, and why others who have ADHD need a fidget spinner. This brilliantly simple lesson helps children understand when they see another student getting something or being able to do something that they aren’t able to have or do. Scott's video proves that how you teach the concept is just as important as what you are trying to teach.
Aimee decided to create the video of her “Band-Aid Lesson” after meeting with several concerned parents worried that their children would be teased for needing something extra or different—e.g. snacks to regulate their blood sugar, a Dexcom monitor due to their type 1 diabetes diagnosis, fidget toys to help those with ADHD to concentrate, extra time on tests for children with anxiety issues, etc. The idea was to share these teaching strategies with other teachers so they could use it in their classrooms, too; but, now parents all over are applauding Scott for the brilliant lesson in humanity and understanding. It's a lesson all children should learn and adults could use a reminder on from time to time.
Watch third-grade teacher Aimee Scott teach the “Band-Aid” lesson about fairness:
@aimeesedventures #howiteach fairness to my #elementarystudents #iteach #backtoschool #teachersoftiktok #teachersontiktok #teacher #teachingontiktok #classroom ♬ original sound – Aimee | Elementary Teacher